Rheumatic diseases are a leading cause of disability in Canada, affecting more than 4.2 million Canadians. Ontarians with rheumatic diseases have longer wait times than other medical sub-specialties in Ontario and twice the wait time of many European countries. Diagnosis and wait times are expected to increase in Ontario as the population ages.
Early treatment and management of rheumatic diseases help to reduce further damage from occurring and reduces the burden not only on the patient, but also the community.
ECHO Ontario Rheumatology was launched in January 2017 to support and build capacity within primary care providers by helping diagnose and manage patients living with rheumatological conditions.
ECHO Rheumatology runs weekly 2-hour sessions that start with a short didactic lecture followed by a de-identified patient case presented by participants. Case presenters receive recommendations from the specialist team and other community partners.
This is an accredited learning activity, for 1 Mainpro+ credit/CPD credit per hour (2 credits per session).
UPDATE: In 2019, Sessions are Fridays from 12:00-1:30pm
- To develop an approach to identifying inflammatory arthritis in order to
- Facilitate early referral and management
- Optimize triage
- Identifying clinical, laboratory and radiographic features suggestive of disease flare/activity
- Monitoring for side effects of commonly used disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARDs)
- Monitoring for disease and treatment associated comorbidity
The program is fully funded by the Ministry of Health and Long Term Care.
Reference: Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences (ICES)